How To Adopt an Ex-Battery Hen

Photo of Kassandra Smith

Kassandra Smith

Senior Editor • Backyard Chicken Coops

Last Updated: 15 May 2014

It’s a well known fact that battery hens are subjected to unspeakable horrors and are at the mercy of the caged egg industry.  However, some great organizations are devoting their time to finding caring environments to re-house ex-battery hens and give them the life they deserve.

elderly chicken keeping feeding ex-battery hens

Adopting an ex-battery hen is a very fulfilling experience, as you are providing a loving, caring environment to an animal that has been used and abused since the day it was born.  To adopt a hen, generally you have to meet certain criteria like having a secure coop and providing details on who will be looking after the animal. The application process tends to vary with each organisation.

To adopt, first you should find an adoption centre in your area.  Here are the centres in your state you should contact for more information.

  • The Battery Hen Adoption Project is based in Brisbane, and saves hens from being slaughtered by buying them and then putting them up for adoption.  They also do a thorough check of all hens to ensure they are healthy upon passing them on to the families.

To adopt the battery hens, you have to provide the project with evidence that you have a secure coop for them to live, away from the prying paws of predators.  To register your interest in adopting, email or check out their website -

New South Wales

  • New South Wales Hen Rescue are the predominant adoption agency for battery hens down south.  They are located in Engadine and have criteria that must be met in order for successful adoption, including a safe coop, and a commitment to look after them.

To apply, download the adoption application form found on their website (!adopt/galleryPage). Hen Rescue gives out a starter pack to all new adopting families so you can hit the ground running.

Victoria, Western Australia and South Australia

  • Edgar’s mission are a group devoted to rescuing and finding new homes homes for factory farmed animals.  The video shows the good work of Edgar’s mission towards improving the lives of battery hens and how they thrive when in their natural habitat.  Edgar’s mission have a three stage process for adopting: 1. An application form on their website ( 2. A telephone interview 3. Providing photos of the animals intended home
  • Dreamers Hen Rescue and Henny Pennies Hen Rescue also work hard to give hens a new chance at the life they deserve.

Battery hens deserve a better life than what they've been subjected to, and the photos and videos of recently freed hens shows just how much they thrive in the outside world.  With the proper care and a loving environment, battery hens soon adapt and make great pets like any other chicken.  Plus you get the brilliant feeling of knowing you've saved a life!

Check out this video of a cage chicken farmer who had a change of heart, and decided to let his chickens roam free rather than face the horrors of the slaughterhouse.

Sources and further reading